As most dentists and hygienists know, treating more than a dozen patients a day can leave you feeling tired, sore, and in pain. The underlying core of this is the repetitive motions combined with awkward angles necessary to gain access to all areas of a patient’s mouth. While it may seem fine to twist your body into an uncomfortable position in order to treat, doing this multiple times a day will lead to issues down the road.
Dentists are highly susceptible to musculoskeletal issues in multiple areas of their bodies, including the:
- Lower and upper back
This is mostly due to your positioning while treating. Everyone knows how to maintain proper posture, but it’s easy to slip into harmful positioning while treating. To avoid this in the future, it’s important to keep these poor body position in mind while you treat.
Forward Head Posture
Allowing your head to slip forward during treatment can cause pain in your neck and shoulders. If you find yourself doing this, make sure to focus on tucking in your chin.
Your shoulders’ natural positions rest below the line of your clavicle. Repeatedly raising them above this line can cause weakness and tightness in your shoulders and upper back. If you find yourself shrugging, make sure to gently bring your shoulders down and back.
It’s very easy to fall into a slouched position while leaning over a patient to treat, but this can cause issues in your lower and upper spine. Make sure to keep your back straight, your belly drawn in, and your shoulders back while working. If necessary, you can even invest in a posture corrector to help you maintain this position.
Wrists and Grip
Wrists should always be in a neutral position, as moving them around and twisting them into unnatural positions can lead to wrist issues. It’s also easy to fall into the common trap of gripping your tools too tightly, which is often the result of using old or unsharpened tools. If you find yourself having to grip or push too hard while treating or cleaning teeth, consider sharpening your tools or investing in new ones.
Sitting Too Far Away
Sitting too far away from patients causes you to lean forward, which lifts your heels off the ground. This can throw off your hips and lower back, causing pain and discomfort. Make sure to position yourself close to your patients, keep your feet flat on the ground, and sit at the appropriate height on your stool (your knees should be slightly below your hips).
Alleviate Pain with Dental Chair Accessories
Crescent dental chair accessories help you better position your patients and keep them still during treatment. This greatly helps you maintain your posture and treat with more comfort. The difference our products make is clear. Experience this difference by visiting the Crescent Products store today.